Acquisitions and collaborations: August/September round up

By Will Chu

- Last updated on GMT

Acquisitions and collaborations: August/September round up

Related tags Bayer Nestlé Boehringer ingelheim

Given that most of the Summer months were in lockdown, August and September were surprisingly busy months for acquisitions and collaborations. Here, NutraIngredients rounds up the best of them.

At the end of last month, Nestlé Health Science (NHSc) revealed plans to acquire US-based biopharmaceutical firm Aimmune Therapeutics, in a €2.2bn deal that extends its food allergy portfolio.

The deal enables the Swiss giants to gain Aimmune’s Palforzia, a regulatory-approved treatment to help reduce the frequency and severity of allergic reaction to peanuts in children.

“This transaction brings together Nestlé’s nutritional science leadership with one of the most innovative companies in food allergy treatment,”​ said Nestlé Health Science CEO Greg Behar.

“Together we will be able to offer a wide range of solutions that can transform the lives of people suffering from food allergies around the world.”

Under terms of the agreement, NHSc have submitted a cash tender offer to acquire all outstanding shares of Aimmune common stock

NHSc currently hold a 25.6% equity ownership stake having already made an initial investment of €122m ($145m) in Aimmune in November 2016, followed by further investments of €25m ($30m) in February 2018, €82.3m ($98m) in November 2018 and €168m ($200m) in January 2020.

“Delivering Palforzia, the world’s first treatment for food allergy, has been a game-changing proposition in the bio-pharmaceutical industry and is transformative for the lives of millions of people living with potentially life-threatening peanut allergy,”​ said Jayson Dallas, president and chief executive officer of Aimmune.

“This acquisition ensures a level of support for Palforzia and our pipeline that will further enhance their potential for patients around the world living with food allergies.”

XMarker platform

Meanwhile, Boehringer Ingelheim has agreed collaborative terms with Israeli biotech firm BiomX that looks to focus on the gut microbiome to assist in the development of therapeutics for Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD).

Using BiomX’s XMarker microbiome-based biomarker discovery platform, the pact will generate metagenomic data from IBD patient gut microbiome samples identify biomarkers linked to the condition.

Further terms allow Boehringer Ingelheim to negotiate an exclusive deal for the biomarkers discovered as a result of the collaboration.

“Recent successes in the field of microbiome-targeted clinical development have further demonstrated the importance of the microbiome for human health,”​ said Jonathan Solomon, chief executive officer of BiomX.

“The XMarker platform has supported our internally developed phage therapy for IBD, BX002, through the analysis of real-world metagenomic patient data.

“Beyond IBD, the XMarker platform has applications in major disease areas such as liver disease and cancer where microbiome composition is increasingly recognized as a potential contributing factor.”

Bayer-Care/of deal

Finally, German pharma giants Bayer has confirmed the acquisition of online vitamin and health supplement company Care/of in a €189m ($225m) deal that secures a 70 % majority stake in the four-year old firm.

As reported by NutraIngredients-USA​, the deal adds to Bayer's existing supplement portfolio that includes brands like Elevit (prenatal vitamins), One A Day, Berocca, and Supradyn (general wellbeing formulations).

“We believe this model and product type has the ability to expand into traditional retail channels as we aim to reach new consumers,”​ said Bayer spokesman Dan Childs to Bloomberg​.

“Together we plan to grow the Care/of business across new channels, new categories and new markets to deliver even more personalised nutrition.”

According to Care/of’s website, the US-based company was founded in 2016, by Craig Elbert and Akash Shah.

The firm makes available a range of personalised vitamin subscriptions and accessories such as reusable drink bottles and coffee cups.

In 2018, the company was valued at €131m ($156m) after raising funds from investors including Goldman Sachs’ venture capital unit.

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